11 unique lamps that will light up your day

There’s nothing like a little interior design to brighten up a brisk winter day! Here are 11 beautiful - yet affordable - European light fixtures bound to leave you in awe.

11 unique lamps that will light up your day
Light fixtures by QAZQA

Time for a change at home? Want to look at things in a different light, perhaps?

Bad puns aside, Dutch brand QAZQA has been providing quirky, elegant, and high-quality lightning fixtures for years. There are hundreds of models available – and dozens on sale right now – but here are a few of our personal favourites! 

1. His and hers made of wood 

There's some real electricity between Adam and Eve! You feel better already, right? These adorable little lamps are made by QAZQA, a brand that aims to make “being unique” accessible for all. Plus, constantly seeing a little helper with a lightbulb for a head is sure to inspire some bright ideas of your own! 

2. Art-ichoke

Is it just us or does this ceiling lamp look a bit like a tasty green veggie used for dips and pizza? Or perhaps a porcupine?

Either way, statement pieces like this are great conversation starters. Put one in your living room and you'll never have to fish around for small talk when guests come over – they're sure to say something!

We love the way this lamp works as a spotlight in the middle, while still emanating slices of warm light from deep within its leaves. Ambient lighting at its best!

3. A truly striking fixture

Now here's some light(n)ing with attitude. This fun wall lamp is perfect for children's rooms, but also a sassy addition for any fan of  pop art, neon signs, Las Vegas, Grease Lightning, thunder storms, Bolt the dog, Harry Potter…the list goes on!

It's another QAZQA design; founder Erik Jansen was inspired by a lamp his dad made over 75 years ago especially for kids, and he's devoted to making his own fun designs to continue the legacy. Luckily so for us kids-at-heart!

4. In the spotlight 

Tired of having the same Ikea floor lamp as all your friends?

This unique, heavyweight floor lamp of wood and steel is ideal for task accent lighting – quite literally putting the spotlight wherever you like. Remember what we said about statement pieces? This is definitely one!

5. Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah

Shabby chic is a huge trend in interior design lately, and it doesn't look like it's going away anytime soon. So embrace it – this birdcage pendant lamp is a perfect addition. 

One great way to spice up boring beige walls – without upsetting your landlord – is to add a pattern to your lighting. The bars of this unique little lamp leave plenty of space for the light to radiate outwards, but also contribute texture to the surroundings without being jarring. 

6. Floral fan-tasy

Ceiling fans all kind of look the same, don't they? Not this one. It retains hints of the classic shape, but with shorter blades and a soft spiraling shape, it's more reminiscent of a flower than a windmill. 

7. Think outside the box

…like in a cube, for example. Accent lighting shouldn't be overthought, but it should be thoughtful – these little fixtures are a subtle but stylish alternative to traditional wall sconce lighting. The three-pronged pattern emitted from the cube adds texture and depth to any room without being overpowering. 

(Oh, it's designed by QAZQA – surprise!)

8. Rustic simplicity 

Industrial meets hipster in this simple wall lamp. It's got a rough, unpolished, no-frills look while still being soft with its round back plate and curved bulb. This lamp is perfect for task lighting or just to add some warmth to an otherwise cool scheme. 

9. Daisy decadence

Or, if you're a fan of flower power but want to keep things glamorous, there's nothing quite like coloured glass flowers sprouting from the ceiling. Even better, put a vase with fresh flowers on a table directly below for a slightly surreal but always elegant Alice in Wonderland, world-turned-upside-down experience. 

10. Twisted torch

A touch of medieval magic can't be wrong – if you do it tastefully! This elegant fixture will make your home feel like a castle and add a perfect dose of drama. One is great as an accent piece – or light up a whole staircase with multiple fixtures for a truly decadent and delightfully renaissance feel.

11.    Basic brass

Decadence isn't your cup of tea? Sometimes the best route is to keep things simple. This fixture is humble and plain, but the polished brass acts as an accent in any dark colour scheme. The unique shape is interesting but not loud, moden yet classic and never overdone – perfect for lighting the dinner table! 

Shop hundreds of beautiful lamps and light fixtures here

This article was produced by The Local and sponsored by


Five questions about Formex and Nordic design

The largest Nordic design fair, Formex, kicks off on Wednesday. We asked Project Manager Christina Olsson what to expect.

Five questions about Formex and Nordic design
Photo: Formex

The semi-annual interior design fair Formex takes place January 18-21. But what's it all about? We spoke with Formex Project Manager Christina Olsson to find out. 

What exactly is Formex? Why should people go?

Formex is the largest meeting place for Nordic interior design. Visitors get information about trends, inspiration and knowledge in the form of exhibitions and lectures.

How and why did Formex start? What is its purpose?  

Formex started in 1960 and is held twice a year, in the beginning of January and in the end of August. The purpose is to be the most important meeting point for Nordic interior design, fashion and accessories.

There is a large focus on Nordic Design – the largest in both number of exhibitors and in size of designs, and not to forget unique craft from the Nordic countries.

What can visitors expect? Is it only Swedish design? Nordic? International? What different types of exhibits are there?

It is Nordic design and we have 800 exhibitors and 20 000 visitors. The fair brings together national and international buyers, agents, designers, producers and media from all over the interior design and gifts industry.

What is new or different at this event, in January 2017? 

All inspirational areas and quest exhibitors add new ideas and can hopefully give your visitors some new and inspiration for their upcoming work.

Some of the young designers at the event. Photo: Formex

Can you name five “highlights” of the event, perhaps particularly unusual or interesting exhibitors this year?

You will find some new guest exhibitors, such as the showing of Carpets as design objects. The aim of the exhibition is to display rugs that have different artistic expressions in terms of their material, technique and pattern. The rugs in the exhibition have been made by architects, artists and designers.

Also there is Sashiko  – a old Japanese technique in handcraft. 

Sashiko, which was developed in the 600s and 700s in Japan,is both a decorative reinforcement stitching and functional embroidery. In the exhibition at Formex, traditional Sashiko patterns from northern Japan meet Sashiko modern fashion patterns created by Scandinavian designers. 

And of course two large inspirational exhibits are those showing the theme Nordic space and the three trends: Austronautica, Monlith, and Milk & Flowers.

The Young Designers area is always interesting –there you can see young ad upcoming designers presenting their work.

Check out the Formex website to learn more

That's all from Christina Olsson. But want a little more Formex?

One of the many designers at Formex this year is Viktoria Månström, with her line of products Anna Viktoria. She has quickly become a leading designer in Sweden.

”Everything I design has a Scandinavian touch and a modern design, built on Swedish traditions,” the designer says. “I take the past of Sweden and bring it into the present.”

And they're covered in modern Swedish art, such as reindeer and elk.

“I actually started with the Dala horse. I come from Dalarna so it felt like the right place to begin.”

While the Dala horse is a classic Swedish symbol, Månström's version is a perfect example of contemporary Scandinavian design – clean, simple, modern and unique, mixing colours and patterns in an innovative way without looking too busy.

And of course they're made beautifully and sustainably.

”My products are truly Scandinavian; products that convey Sweden. And they also last. They're items you can really use in everyday life.”

Check out the Formex website to learn more